Written by Blanche Evans
When you shop for a mortgage loan, you have certain rights that are guaranteed by The Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA). RESPA is a consumer protection statute from the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).
RESPA is designed to help you be a better shopper during the home buying process. Knowing your rights before you enter into any loan agreement will help you get the best loan possible. You have the right to:
- Shop for the best loan for you and compare the charges of different mortgage brokers and lenders.
- Be informed about the total cost of your loan including the interest rate, points and other fees.
- Ask for a Good Faith Estimate of all loan and settlement charges before you agree to the loan and pay any fees.
- Know what fees are not refundable if you decide to cancel the loan agreement.
- Ask your mortgage broker to explain exactly what the mortgage broker will do for you.
- Know how much the mortgage broker is getting paid by you and the lender for your loan.
- Ask questions about charges and loan terms that you do not understand.
- A credit decision that is not based on your race, color, religion, national origin, sex, marital status, age, or whether any income is from public assistance.
- Know the reason if your loan was turned down.
- Ask for the HUD settlement cost booklet “Shopping for Your Home Loan”.
Lenders offer different mortgage products depending on your credit scores, income-to-debt ratio, payment histories, how much you want to borrow and the term of the loan.
Ask your lender to show you the advantages and disadvantages of each loan product so you can choose the best one to suit your needs. When you make your choice, be sure to compare the same product with the same product offered by at least two other lenders.